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Nan in Mass

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Everything posted by Nan in Mass

  1. He got into five engineering schools, all offered some scholarships, he went to his first choice, and is now working as an engineer. He did some community classes in high school and I suspect that the schools were mostly just interested in his calc and physics scores, for enrollment purposes. His interesting transcript got him the scholarships. College was not all smooth sailing but he made it through and has a very cool job. And I have a lot more grey hair. I would do it again. : ) Nan
  2. Happy New Year, All! May it be one of great progress in the direction of improvement for every living thing on earth! I am reading Turtles All The Way Down. It is very good, so good that I doubt I would have picked it on my own, but youngest gave it to me for Christmas, so I will read it and just deal with any emotional turmoil it causes. So far, I am enjoying it, but it has the potential to be memorable. I have not yet figured out how the book relates to the title, which is a quote that I recognize, but I am beginning to have an inkling. Nan
  3. iiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiii There (hopefully grin) are 60 candles for you to wish on. ()()()()()()()()()()()()()()()()()()()()()()()()()()()()()()()()()()()()()()()()()()()()()()()()()()()()()()()()()()()() And 60 hugs for the countless hours of escape, emotional release, connection, joy, learning, and community you have given us all by making a place for us to share our book lives with each other. Those sharings ripple out through the orher people in each of our lives, too. You are making a big impact in a lovely nonjudgemental way. I hope all those ripples eventually work their way around the world back to you to buoy you up when you need it. Happy Birthday, dear Robin! Nan
  4. Lol... I reread because rereading allows me to choose the world I want to escape into. This is also why my house is overrun with books. A few of the many authors, picked at random, that I consistently have reread for years now are Patricia McKillip, Ngaio Marsh, Terry Pratchett, Angela Thirkel, A A Milne, P G Wodehouse, Georgette Heyer, and Kenneth Graham.
  5. I fiiiinallly read something new. I have spent a year rereading, which is nice but not exactly postworthy. I just finished a Frank Herbert book. I love Dune so I was excited when I discovered Deep Pressure. It was not at all what I expected. At one point in time, I am sure this was scifi but at this point, it is much more of a spy story. I am also listening to something new - The Creative Curve. So far no concepts that I didn't know already from read books like Blink. Nan
  6. I can't believe this thread is still alive! I popped in on the boards to post in the Book-a-Week thread and discovered that I had notifications for it. Rereading the original felt very strange. I can tell you all, though, now that all three of mine are through university, that I still believe the things I wrote are true. : ) Nan
  7. Hmmm... Menopause wasn't a problem for me, other than having to go to the bathroom frequently because early on, I applied some physics to the problem of hot flashes and started drinking a large glass of water to stop them. The extra heat went into bringing the water up to body temp instead of making me uncomfortable. I didn't have the emptional swings other people complained about. The irregularness was a nuisance but didn't last that long. I would love it if I had gotten less shy, the way some people described, but that didn't happen. I never had to worry about my weight, but now I am surprised at how easy it is to gain two pounds overnight. And the only sort of excersize that seems to work for losing it again is going for a brisk walk before bed. I understand about the sadness. By now, I have accumulated my share of heartbreaks and losses, and I miss my kids a lot and probably always will. There are places of deep deep sadness in my life that I try hard to avoid remembering. I am hoping some day I will be able to enjoy all the family photos I took and continue to take, but so far, I can't bear to see them. I am surprised at how my relationship with my husband has gotten better and better, even though it was great to start with. It still surprises me how perceptive my adult children are, and how helpful they are with my problems. Physically, I feel better than I have in years, despite osteoperosis, rotator cuff surgery due to a fall, arthritis, SAD, bursitis, migraines, and some other stuff. I went back to doing ballet classes, having quit when I was 16 ( so a 40+year gap haha) and have found that the ballet plus magnesium supplements and a better diet eliminate most of the pain. I wake up in the morning hurting, go to ballet, and walk out pain free. I go six days a week. It takes a huge chunk out of the morning and I am as rotten at it as I ever was, but I love it. I made it through this winter with plenty of energy, too, which was so nice. I love how well I can learn new things now. I am much better at that than I was. I never could and never will be able to remember things, but I learn easily now. Never thought that would happen! And I love how much better I am at rigging things so that I can't mess something up, like locking my keys in the car or giving in to the temptation to eat toast for every meal. That is just experience but I am grateful for it. I play recorder with a group of people in their late 80's and early 90's, so I can see that it isn't all bad. : ) Nan
  8. Lord of the Rings had the most influence on me growing up. A A Milne's books underlie everything in my life as well. And Wind in the Willows. And my grandfather's copy of Two Little Savages. Dated as the language is, I found it pretty accurate, as an adult. The Little Prince influenced me, and continues to influence me. It portrays what the adult world feels like to someone stuck with a way simpler view of it, which I seem to be, and I have always found that comforting. I reread the Narnia books a lot but I don't know how much they influenced me. Ditto fairy tales and books about sailing around the world or getting lost in the woods. Lord of the Rings continues to influence me as an adult. Music of the Dolphins I read every year, for some reason. Amd my family has Three Men in a Boat more or less memorized. It isn't an influence, but it uses the same amusing wording that we use to entertain ourselves, which is why we like it. And it has boats. Ditto Wodehouse, minus the boats. I love Patricia McKillip's books deeply. They capture the confusion and magic and music in my life, and I love her writing. The Wee Free Men/Tiffany Aching series speaks to me. The Well-Trained Mind had a huge impact on my adult life grin. Huge huge huge. Stacia gave me The Plover to read and I loved it. So much truth in that book. I loved Door into Ocean, another recommendation here. Nan
  9. I haven't. I've tried a few new authors of old favourites and didn't like them very enough to continue reading them, so I haven't tried with Lord Peter. They feel like they lack something, if the writer had a specific style, as most of the ones I've tried do. I think I dislike continuations that are continuations of an author whose writing style or characters I love, and sometimes like continuations of worlds that I love. Those might be easier to carry off and have the potential to be even better than the original. In some ways, I think the idea of a world or characters taking on a life of their own is the best possible outcome for a story one has begun. Nan
  10. I am reading Busman's Honeymoon. For the umpteenth time. : ) Nan
  11. This is probably something you already know, and won't help with eating more, but I overeat when I am either thirsty (my body confuses hunger and thirst) or craving salt or craving caffine. I try to remember to try to talk myself into drinking a cup of tea and a pint of rehydration fluid and then waiting a little while before I set out to eat other things. If I do that, I usually stop wanting to eat eat eat. If I can stop overeating, then I don't feel yucky later and I do a better job of feeding myself properly without worrying about it. Nan
  12. I am rereading some of the Ender's Game series, cautiously because it is pretty pretty traumatic, while I wait for the last book of the First Formic Wars part to become available at the library. I was given one of this series to read by one of my (now adult) children, who hadn't realized that I hadn't read Ender's Game when they all did, and who thought that I would like this particular book because it gave the parents' perspective. He was old enough to be figuring out that parents don't always confront their children with everything they know about those children's thoughts, secrets, and activities, and that as a parent, one must make heartbreaking decisions for the good of the child and feel one's way along a very narrow path balanced between making things so easy for the child that it hampers growth and making things too hard. I am also doing Pimsleur German and relistening to A Short History of Nearly Everything while I go to sleep. Nan
  13. I am still working my way through the Honor Harrington series, and relistening to things when I do audiobooks. My reading time has been reduced recently because my car time needs to be spent on the phone with lonely relatives instead of listening to audiobooks, and my before-bed reading time is spent drawing for inktober. Does anyone have any good advice for making it all the way through NaNoMo? A young friend is doing it. It needs to be brief advice because he is young. : ) Nan
  14. Just thought I would update this and thank everyone for the most excellent, helpful information! It turns out that my student has found her own way to study English. She has acquired a play list of English for Arabic speakers youtube videos. What she wants me to teach her is to read and write, desperately wants. That has simplified things enormously. I asked her to write my name in Arabic and she could, so I know that she can do phonetics in her own language. We are communicating using google translate, albeit with some difficulty because that seems to give the translation in standard Arabic. So far, she has managed ok. I am finding that the same quick-and-dirty method of teaching reading that I used with my children is working fine for her. Our biggest problem is her accent. Sometimes, I have to tell her the sound of a letter by saying it the way she would, for example, lightly rolling the r's rather than growling them or skipping them, the way we do in New England. Not exactly ideal, but it works. English vowels are horrible, and I have to try to be really consistent about pronouncing things the same way. I think she may be hearing sounds that I don't mean to put in. We are making progress though! Just wanted to thank everyone. Nan
  15. Just checking in to say hi to everyone. Life has been extra busy recently so I haven't been around, but I am sure it will shift again eventually and I will be back regularly again. (Jane, in case that worries you, Mum is fine, just needing me there every day now since her arthritis is worse. We have been doing a lot of gardening. : ) I am just working away from home for 7 days a week now, which makes things a bit complicated.) I have been reading lots, mostly as audio books in the car or while doing chores - many rereads, Dune books, Ender's Game books, some Neizte (terribly slowly - one of the perils of homeschooling is that your adult children continue to discuss their reading with you), assorted scifi/fantasy, some running books (another peril of homeschooling is that when your adult children are learning something, you want to learn, too). Interestingly, the coach in Chi Running kept saying the same things my ballet instructor says. It is a book about the crossover between Tai Chi and running. Apparently it crosses over to dance, as well. Another peril of homeschooling is that your less booky adult children expect you to continue to supply them with reading matter, so the annual hunt for adult male reading matter is on, since some are joining us for vacation and some are shipping out soon. In order to go on vacation, I need to leave books with my mother. Her burn rate is about a book a day, if I am not there. Fortunately, she likes to reread, so I don't need a summer's worth of new books, but that is still a lot of books. (Jane, she loved the books you recommended this winter!) Life has been pretty busy. We have had 5 clan graduations, several birthdays, and a funeral this May/June, on top of everything else. To balance spending all that time with someone moving in slow motion, I am doing nine dance classes a week. It was hard work at first, but I feel great now. I have now confirmed something I have been suspicious of for years - I have to move hard for two hours a day to feel ok. I was disintegrating before I began all the dance classes. I miss everyone. : ) Nan
  16. The Masons or the Rotary Club or some similar organization gave my son (and some other students) a trade school scholarship. Our local public school administered the scholarship. Nan
  17. I know. This person is not at all as she was described! I thought I would be teaching someone who was illiterate and not interested in reading and writing, someone who spoke no English at all. I could have done that. I could have taught her some survival English, by rote, and she would have been able to start interacting in the community. But she is starting someplace entirely different and wants much more. We were all taken off guard. I have taught people to read before but they were small children whom I saw every day and they already spoke English. Nan
  18. Thank you very much for the encouragement. Especially the do what I can and leave the rest up to her part. Phonograms? Nan
  19. School vocabulary is a good idea. Maybe we will do that after we do baby vocab. Finding what she is interested in would be good. If nothing else, it is something to talk about. Finding out about the books for story hour beforehand is a good idea, too. Thank you! Nan
  20. I will keep this in mind. I think quick success is what she needs, after her earlier failure.
  21. I keep meaning to do this myself with Spanish. Maybe I can find some youtube shows in English that she might find interesting. Maybe a cooking show?
  22. I am hoping it does turn out to be a great experience. At the moment I am too scared to appreciate my half. : ) I was looking at making phone flashcards myself for her because she can't read in English. With an easy-to-use phone app (any suggestions?), I could put a picture on one side and a recording of my voice on the other. I agree that it would be better for her to make her own flashcards and that paper would be much better, but I can't think how to do that at this point in time. There are no ESL classes at the high school. I am doing this through the organization that does this in my community. Help and guidance appears to be minimal. They are trying. Resources are scarce in my community and although this is a city, it is a small one. There is a bus system, but I don't know if my tutoree knows how to use it and it isn't an extensive system. I don't know if she has money for bus fare or babysitters. They tried to teach her to read and write English when she first arrived and got nowhere. They suspect learning difficulties. They said they thought she couldn't read Arabic, either. I have established that she can read read Arabic. I suspect she was in shock last time they tried (a few years ago). It could be, though, that she will have trouble learning to read. The agency gave me a few early readers - thin picture books with one word per page. I have no idea if she will feel insulted if I present her with one of these. It doesn't look like I am going to get much guidance on the learning to read and write part. I thought we'd tackle baby vocab first, since she has a baby and was excited to learn the word for stroller and bottle. Definitely didn't learn to read English in school. I asked her husband (whose English is better) if they spoke any other languages and they both laughed and said only Arabic. Thank you for your help, Nan
  23. A baby/toddler story time would be perfect! This is a brilliant idea. I will investigate. She is within walking distance of the library. And I will make enquiries about mosques. As far as I know, the nearest one is at least a three quarters of an hour drive away. But I will ask what our locals do. Maybe there is a closer option. A weekly visitor to practise with is a good idea. Nan
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